Soccer News of Thursday, 10 December 2015
Four Ghanaian players have reached the knockout stages of the 2015/16 Uefa Champions League competition after Wednesday night’s games completed the Group stage challenge.
Injury returnee Kwadwo Asamoah, defender Baba Rahman, Nana Akwasi Asare and Thomas Partey have all secured places with their clubs for the knock rounds.
But two players – Enock Adu Kofi and striker Patrick Twumasi will play no further part of the competition as their clubs have been eliminated.
Twumasi, who scored for FC Astana at Galatasaray on Tuesday night, left a remarkable impression in the competition after netting five (5) goals from the preliminary rounds to the group stages.
The former Sogakope Red Bull Academy player even served a six-game ban but returned to score crucial goals for Astana.
While Adu Kofi and his Malmo FF’s terrible campaign was rounded up by Real Madrid after mauling them 8-0 in Spain on Tuesday night. Malmo finished bottom of Group A after winning just a game. Adu, a former Liberty Professionals midfielder, started all six group stage games for Malmo.
But there was joy for midfielder Thomas Partey as his Atletico Madrid side finished atop Group C after expressing superiority over Benfica, Galatasaray and Astana. The former Tema Youth midfielder appeared in the Atleti squad for two games and warmed the bench on Tuesday when they won at Benfica.
Elsewhere Nana Akwasi Asare perpetuated his impressive round of form by lasting the entire duration of the game for KAA Gent in their 2-1 win over Russian side Zenith St Petersberg to finish second in Group H. Asare, 30, started and completed all six games in the group stage for Gent.
Black Stars full-back Baba Rahman will also continue to play in the competition as his Chelsea side put their domestic woes behind them claim a priceless 2-0 win over FC Porto at the Stamford Bridge. The 21-year-old left-back watched from the stands as his team-mates crucially won the tie to secure a knockout berth for the Premier League title-holders. Baba played in three (3) of Chelsea’s six games in the Group stage.
Finally injury returnee Kwadwo Asamoah will be registered for the competition by Juventus who also secured their place in the round after finishing second to Manchester City. The Old Ladies managed to sail through despite their slim 1-0 loss at Sevilla on Tuesday. Asamoah was omitted from the Juventus squad for the group stages game due to injuries but he is back to fitness and is likely to be registered in January.